Η σπάνις ποσίμων υδάτων ως δημογραφικός κίνδυνος στην Ιστορία
Scarcity of drinkable water constitutes a potential demographic risk, i.e. a factor affecting both the size and the characteristics of a population, as well as the power and security of a state actor or other polity. Throughout history change in geophysical and climate data has affected the distribution of power in an interstate system. Climate change may cause the shift of the world geopolitical centre towards the north and a group of states in control of drinkable water sources (New North). In this framework we examine three historical cases of polities which faced problems of power and security loss due to scarcity of drinkable water. These are the town of Tell Leilan in Mesopotamia during the 3rd millennium BC, the Mayan cities in Central America from the 10th to the 13th century, and the Khmer Empire in Indochina in the 13th century. Access to drinkable water is also a factor of intrastate or interstate conflicts/tensions. In most cases these tensions are solved by a bilateral agreement and negotiations, rather than through a direct military confrontation. Examples examined in this context are the dispute between India and Bangladesh concerning the waters of Ganges, the dispute between Israel and Jordan concerning the waters of Jordan, and the dispute between Hungary and Czechoslovakia/Czech Republic over the waters of Danube.
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